Avineon's Women in GIS

28 February 2024

Written by Avineon

March 8th is International Women's Day, which is a perfect time to recognize the incredible women who are part of Avineon's GIS team. These women play a vital role in our success, leveraging their skills, creativity, and experience to provide invaluable expertise and GIS solutions. Each took a slightly different path in discovering their passion for GIS, and we asked them to share their stories in the article below.

Laura Wilson, Director of PMO & Delivery Services



Laura leads the Project Management Office and Delivery Services practice for Avineon. She has worked in the GIS field for 25 years and discovered her passion for GIS during college. As a geology major, she enrolled in an environmental class that featured a hands-on GIS lab using ArcView 3.2. Captivated by the visualization and applied problem-solving aspects, she found herself hooked.


Laura began her professional journey as an intern at the Carolina Population Center, where she immersed herself in digitizing and grasping the significance of spatial analyses. Throughout her career, she has maintained a 'hands-on' approach, serving as an analyst, developer, consultant, and project manager. Spending six years at Esri, she gained insights into the power of storytelling with GIS and learned the value GIS can bring to different types of clients. As a consultant, she worked with universities, local governments, utilities, airports, and private businesses, tackling challenges related to data sharing, asset management, public safety, logistics, environmental management, and natural hazard management. One of her most cherished GIS experiences was supporting North Carolina Emergency Management as a developer, where she witnessed the beneficial abilities of GIS in providing real-time alerting and supporting key decisions across the state during major events like Hurricane Matthew. 


Ultimately, her passion for GIS stems from its ability to unite disparate data, technology, and people through location as a common denominator. As Avineon’s PMO Director and a Project Manager, Laura guides organizations towards best practices, data governance, and change management, ensuring the successful implementation of GIS and its ongoing value. GIS is always evolving which means there is always more to learn and improve!




AlexNWD-1Alex Lopez-Rogina, GISP, Project Manager


Alex has been a Project Manager at Avineon for over two years. She initially began her career as a civil engineer for a water utility, but she found her true calling when she became captivated by GIS’s capacity to manipulate maps and data. Alex loves the GIS community and actively contributes as a volunteer for URISA, an international GIS association, and holds membership in the GIS Association of Alabama. Her passion for GIS stems from its incredible diversity and its potential to effect positive change. She appreciates that each conversation with people in the industry unveils new and innovative uses for GIS.




Wendy Peloquin, GISP, Business Development Manager



Wendy is a Business Development Manager at Avineon. While attending the University of Georgia for her undergraduate degree, she found herself drawn to geography and decided to take a few geography classes as it was her childhood favorite subject. She then discovered her passion for GIS during a cartography class. This led her to switch majors and to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Geography alongside a GIS certificate.


Following graduation, Wendy immersed herself in the GIS industry, gaining experience in both local government and the private sector. After more than a decade in the field, she pursued further education, earning a Master's degree in GIS Administration from the University of West Florida.


Wendy greatly cherishes the vibrant GIS community that is filled with dedicated individuals committed to its growth and advancement. Additionally, she finds fulfillment in volunteering with URISA and facilitating for the GIS Leadership Academy.




Abigail Smith, GIS Analyst 



Abigail is a GIS Analyst at Avineon and works from Athens, Alabama in her home office. She was introduced to GIS during her time at Auburn University, where she completed an introductory Geography course. She continued to take and excel in Geography courses as electives while pursuing another major, but quickly discovered she was more passionate about Geography than her previous major. She then transitioned to Geography as her primary field of study and never looked back.


Passionate about the world of GIS, Abigail finds fulfillment in the variety it provides each day. She values the opportunity to work collaboratively with both clients and a skilled team of geospatial professionals, leveraging their collective expertise to tackle challenges and deliver impactful solutions.